Just when you think you’ve seen every type of insurance policy possible, along comes yet another one that you might not have given much thought about: garage insurance.
If you’re a homeowner, you’ll likely have a good home insurance policy in place to protect the structure of your home (buildings insurance) and all the possessions and belongings inside your home (contents insurance).
If you also have a garage that’s part of your property, then you may be wondering whether you need garage insurance as well as a standard home insurance policy.
In our helpful guide below, we discuss everything you need to know about what garage insurance is and whether you actually need it.
Do I need separate garage insurance?
Whether you need separate garage insurance or not depends on the circumstances surrounding your home and garage.
For example, if your garage is attached to your home, then the garage itself and its contents will likely be covered by your home insurance policy, so if someone breaks into your garage and steals things, you will most likely be covered under your home insurance.
However, if your garage isn’t attached to your home and is a standalone building further away from your home, then you may need to look into a separate garage insurance policy as most home insurers will deem it as an outbuilding, which isn’t usually covered under home insurance policies.
Of course, it depends on your home insurance provider and the terms and conditions of your policy as to whether your garage is covered. If you’re not sure whether you need to get a separate garage insurance policy, check with your home insurance provider about what is and isn't covered.
Do I need garage contents insurance?
Whether you need contents insurance for your garage depends on how valuable you determine the contents of your garage.
Some homeowners keep their garage completely empty and only use it for storing things like boxes and their rubbish bins. Others, on the other hand, keep many valuable items inside their garages such as lawnmowers, golf clubs, bicycles, workout equipment and even their car.
Therefore, whether you want to take out garage contents insurance or not depends on how valuable its content is.
Garage contents insurance could cover your valuable belongings against the costs associated with damages caused to your garage and can help to pay for repair and replacement costs.
Most contents insurance policies for garages will also cover fire and flood damage, as well as theft.
Whether the contents of your garage are protected by your home insurance policy or you need to take out a separate garage contents policy, you will need to provide the insurance provider with an accurate estimate of how much the belongings in your garage are worth. It’s important to be as accurate as possible when getting a quote, either for home insurance or separate garage insurance, as you might void your policy if you need to make a claim and it doesn’t accurately reflect the total cost of the contents of your garage.
Do I need rented garage contents insurance?
If you do not have a garage on your property, but you rent a garage from a private company or person with land, you may want to take out rented garage contents insurance which is a separate policy that will cover the costs of damages and theft to the contents of your garage if it’s not on your own property.
How much does a garage insurance policy cost?
The cost of garage insurance and how much cover you should take out depends on what kind of things you keep inside your garage.
If you keep expensive items such as fancy bicycles, lawnmowers and your car, you’ll likely pay much more for your garage insurance as there are more expensive things to be covered by the policy provider.
If your garage is attached to your home and the contents are covered by your home insurance policy, then it’s important that you make sure that the accurate value of the contents of your garage are reflected in the insurance policy and if not, you may have to change the policy to reflect your garage.
How to increase garage security
There are several ways that you can increase the security of your garage and home so that there is less chance of it being broken into, so you don’t have to make a claim.
Of course, there isn’t that much you can do about storm or fire damage as these things are accidents, but you can take several precautions to try and ensure your garage and its contents are as safe and secure as possible.
- Invest in a secure garage door that locks properly. Electronic garage doors are becoming increasingly popular and these usually work by pressing a button on a remote control or from the inside of the garage to open and close the door which can help to keep it more secure.
- Install a security alarm on your garage door. This will immediately alert you to any suspicious activity outside and will also scare off any burglars attempting to break into your home and/or garage.
- If you keep high-value items in your garage, try and keep them out of sight where possible. Of course, it’s not always easy to keep a car inside a garage out of sight, but you can try and hide things like golf clubs and bicycles where possible.
- Keep the outside of your home and garage well lit; this is a useful deterrent for burglars.
- Use gravel or stones on your driveway as the noise will likely put potential thieves off from walking on it as they don’t want to be heard. If someone does walk over them, it will also help to alert you that someone is approaching your home.
- Use security cameras to keep an eye on your property and to help deter thieves from approaching.